‘Disturbing’ speech

Chalk up another casualty of today’s climate of hyper political correctness.

On Tuesday, a pledged Illinois delegate for Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama resigned after she was heard using the word “monkeys” to describe two black kids playing in a tree.

Shades of Howard Cosell.

According to news accounts, Linda Ramirez-Sliwinski left her Carpentersville, Ill., home on Saturday to confront two children who were climbing in a tree next door. The parents were outside with the kids, but Ms. Ramirez-Sliwinski said she thought the boys were damaging the tree and might be injured.

“I calmly said the tree is not there for them to be climbing in there like monkeys,” she told the Chicago Tribune.

Ms. Ramirez-Sliwinski says she didn’t mean the remark in a racial way. But she will now be replaced as an Obama delegate.

Fine. That’s the campaign’s prerogative.

But where’s the outrage over the fact that Ms. Ramirez-Sliwinski was actually ticketed by police for her comment? That’s right. Following her remark, the mother of one of the boys called the police, who responded by issuing Ms. Ramirez-Sliwinski a $75 summons for disorderly conduct.

A police official told The Associated Press that the “monkeys” remark violated a local ordinance banning conduct which disturbs or alarms people.

Has anybody in Carpentersville ever read the Bill of Rights?

Ms. Ramirez-Sliwinski says she’ll fight the ticket. Good. And while the Obama campaign has every right to distance itself from her comment, it would be refreshing if the candidate also lambasted the dangerous and idiotic notion that an individual can be ticketed and face legal proceedings for saying something that “disturbs” or “alarms” someone else.

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